The 8 Best At-Home STD Tests of 2020

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First Look

STDCheck.com

"This company has an option for HIV tests that can detect a new infection, and they also provide in-depth information about each STD they test for."

Persona Labs

"Doctors consultations are available, and they will prescribe prescriptions to treat certain STDs."

HealthLabs.com

"With flexible payment options, you can use an FSA or HSA card to pay for these tests."

QuestDirect

"Using QuestDirect cuts out the middle man. Quest also offers confirmatory testing for several STDs, which reduces the risk of a false positive."

NURX

"Instead of just collecting urine and/or blood, they also have you collect a vaginal swab, throat swab, and/or rectal swab."

MyLAB Box

"My Lab Box offers kits that allow you to self swab the mouth and rectum, not just test for genital STDs."

Everlywell

"The Everlywell test kit uses different methodologies for testing men and women. Men are tested with urine and blood, women with vaginal swabs and blood."

LetsGetChecked

"A nurse will call you if you test positive to help you figure out what to do next. Nurses are also available to answer questions during the process."

Sexually transmitted diseases, otherwise known as STDs or STIs, are incredibly common. If you are sexually active, you are potentially at risk. That’s true whether you’re young or old, straight or gay, male or female. How common are they? Well, that depends on the STD.

Here are a few of the most common conditions tracked by the CDC:

  • More than one out of every six people aged 14 to 49 years have genital herpes.
  • Between two and three million new chlamydia infections happen every year. Around 1 in every 20 young women between the ages of 14 and 24 have chlamydia. In some populations at particularly high risk, this number may be as high as 1 in 10.
  • After dropping for many years, the rate of syphilis is again on the rise. 

These numbers may seem high or even unrealistic. That’s because most people who are infected with STDs don’t know they have them. The vast majority of STD infections go unrecognized, sometimes for years or even decades. Many people with STDs have no noticeable symptoms. 

The only way to know whether or not you have an STD is to get tested. Unfortunately, testing isn’t a standard part of medical care in the United States. Doctors regularly check their patients’ blood pressure. They don’t regularly check if they have an STD. 

Why Should You Consider an At-Home STD Test?

Because STD testing isn’t usually a part of preventative health care, people generally have to ask for an STD test if they want one. Depending on who you are this can feel embarrassing. Worse, doctors are not always aware of STD test options or know how to order them for you. They may also feel embarrassed talking about sex and sexual risk, just like their patients. In addition, some people are worried about their doctor or health insurer knowing anything about their sexual history. That can make them reluctant to seek out testing through the usual channels, even if testing in a doctor’s office may well be covered by insurance.

For these and other reasons, there has been a growing interest in at-home STD testing. However, not all at home STD tests are the same. The most accurate at-home STD tests are the same tests that you’d get in a doctor’s office. The only difference is that instead of getting a doctor to order them for you, you order them online. Then you go to a commercial laboratory and they take a urine sample and/or blood. There are also at-home testing kits that allow you to collect your own sample of urine or saliva and send it into a company for testing. These tests are likely to be less accurate than lab-based testing. Below, we've highlight both options, so you can read on to see which route you feel most comfortable with.

Our Top Picks

STDCheck.com

STDCheck.com

STDCheck.com

Type of Testing: Lab-based testing

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, HIV, early HIV, Hepatitis A, B & C

Time to Receive Results: 1 to 2 days

Cost: $24 to $349

With STDCheck.com you choose which STD tests you’re interested in and order them online or by phone. That order is then sent to a lab near you, where you provide a urine and/or blood sample. This company has an option for HIV tests that can detect a new infection, and they also provide in-depth information about each STD they test for. You can use an FSA or HSA card to pay for these tests. A doctor is also available for you to consult with by phone. 

Persona Labs

Persona Labs

Persona Labs

Type of Testing: Lab-based testing

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, syphilis, HIV, HIV-related, Hepatitis A, B & C, herpesvirus, Epstein-Barr virus, human t-cell lymphotropic virus

Time to Receive Results: 2 to 10 business days

Cost: $46 to $522

This site offers more STD testing options than many other companies, but it is difficult to navigate. There is also relatively little information about STDs for which they offer testing. However, doctors consultations are available, and they will prescribe prescriptions to treat certain STDs. 

HealthLabs.com

HealthLabs.com

HealthLabs.com

Type of Testing: Lab-based testing

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, syphilis, HIV, early HIV, Hepatitis B & C, herpes type 1 and 2

Time to Receive Results: 1 to 3 business days

Cost: $129 to $444

Like most lab-based testing companies, with HealthLabs.com you choose which STD tests you’re interested in and order them online or by phone. That order is then sent to a lab near you, where you provide a urine and/or blood sample. This company has an option for HIV tests that can detect a new infection, and they also provide good information about appropriate testing windows for all of their options. You can use an FSA or HSA card to pay for these tests. They have specialists who will help you understand your results, and physicians are available for a consultation if your results mandate it. 

QuestDirect

QuestDirect

QuestDirect

Type of Testing: Lab-based testing

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, syphilis, herpes simplex 1 and 2, HIV, early HIV, Hepatitis B & C

Time to Receive Results: Typically within 7 business days

Cost: $49 to $379

Many other at home STD tests will send you to Quest for testing. Using QuestDirect cuts out the middle man. Quest also offers confirmatory testing for several STDs, which reduces the risk of a false positive. However, the STD testing information on their site is less comprehensive than many. In addition, this company does not connect you to a healthcare provider. 

NURX

NURX

NURX

Type of Testing: Self-collected samples

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, syphilis, HIV, Hepatitis C, 

Time to Receive Results: Within 7 business days

Cost: $150 to $220, accepts insurance

Although self-collected samples aren’t necessarily as good as samples taken in the lab, NURX tests do one very smart thing. Instead of just collecting urine and/or blood, they also have you collect a vaginal swab, throat swab, and/or rectal swab. This makes it possible to test for oral and anal STDs that might otherwise be missed. Because of this, NURX tests might be a better option than some lab-based tests for individuals who have unprotected oral and/or anal sex. In addition, they provide unlimited access to a medical team.

MyLAB Box

MyLabBox

MyLabBox

Type of Testing: Self-collected samples

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, trichomoniasis, HPV, herpes, HIV, mycoplasma. PreP and vaginal discharge options available. 

Time to Receive Results: 2 to 5 days

Cost: $79 to $369, $499 for a couple’s kit, coupons available 

Like NURX, My Lab Box offers kits that allow you to self swab the mouth and rectum, not just test for genital STDs. They also have several additional test options, such as a kit that provides tests for both parts of a couple, and tests to diagnose different causes of vaginal discharge. It has some information about each STD, but no good information about testing windows. Physician consults are available if you test positive, and it may be possible to get a prescription for treatment. Otherwise, a certified STD counselor is available, but not a physician. 

Everlywell

Everlywell

Everlywell

Type of Testing: Self-collected samples

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, trichomoniasis, herpes, Hepatitis C, HIV

Time to Receive Results: Website says "within days"

Cost: $49 to $199, coupons available

The Everlywell test kit uses different methodologies for testing men and women. Men are tested with urine and blood, women with vaginal swabs and blood. The site offers consults for positive results through their independent physician network and there may be options for treatment. You can pay for your tests using an FSA/HSA card.

LetsGetChecked

Let’s Get Checked

Let’s Get Checked

Type of Testing: Self-collected sample

STD Tests Available: Chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, syphilis, HIV, herpes, ureaplasma, gardnerella, mycoplasma

Time to Receive Results: 2 to 5 days

Cost: $99 to $269, Let's Get Checked is offering a 25% off coupon at least the next two years. Get 25% off with "VeryWell25."

At-home tests like this, where you collect your own sample, are not as accurate as tests performed in an on-site lab. In order to use these tests you will be asked to collect urine in a sample tube and/or prick your finger for blood. LetsGetChecked laboratories are CLIA approved and CAP-accredited and use capillary testing; it's a simple and painless method of blood testing that is as accurate as a venous blood draw. 

Some collection kits for this company can also be purchased at CVS. A nurse will call you if you test positive to help you figure out what to do next. They are also available to answer questions throughout the testing process. Should you test positive with chlamydia, trichomoniasis, ureaplasma, gardnerella, or mycoplasma a nurse will send a prescription to the pharmacy of your choosing. Your data is never shared with a third party and it is completely anonymized.

Doctor consultations are not available.

What Makes for a Good At-Home STD test?

  • It provides clear information about what STDs are being tested for
  • You are able to get tested for any STD you might be worried about
  • Results are provided in a clear manner, with access to a healthcare professional for more information
  • The test company will link you to treatment and/or further testing as appropriate

What STDs Should I Get Tested For? 

The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) is an independent agency that makes recommendations for improving the public’s health. The CDC is a government agency that also makes recommendations for treatment. Each agency’s recommendations for who should get screened are summarized below.

If you know or suspect you have been exposed to an STD, these guidelines do not apply. They are designed to recommend whether the general population should be tested. If you know or suspect you have been exposed to an STD, testing is a good idea.

Why You Should Trust Our Recommendations

The author of this guide has been a sexual health educator for more than 20 years. She has a Masters in Public Health and a Ph.D. focused on women’s reproductive health. In her professional capacity, she has counseled individuals about STD testing and fertility and taught about sexual health at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Review criteria are objective, and screening recommendations are based on evidence.  

Frequently Asked Questions About STDs and Testing

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